Parāśakti

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By Swami Harshananda

Sometimes transliterated as: Parasakti, ParAZakti, Paraashakti


Parāśakti (‘the great Śakti or power’)

Hinduism considers God not only as the Father, but also as the Mother, of this universe. If God is Parabrahman, he is also Parāśakti. These two aspects are inseparable even as fire and its burning power are.

According to the Śaivāgamas, Śiva as the highest Principle differentiates himself—at the time of evolution of this universe—into Parāśakti (the transcendental, supreme Power), all the while remaining himself unaffected.

From Parāśakti (Supreme Power) evolves Cicchakti (Power of Consciousness); from Cichhakti comes Anandaśakti (Power of Bliss); from Ānandaśakti emanates Icchāśakti (Will-power); from Icchāśakti issues Jñānaśakti (Power of Knowledge); and, from this Jñānaśakti emerges Kriyāśakti (Power of Action).

Sometimes, the five aspects of Śiva like Sadyojāta, Vāmadeva and so on are said to have been derived from the five aspects of Śakti.

The word Parāśakti is more frequently used to indicate Pārvatī herself.


References

  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore

OLD CONTENT

Parāśakti (‘the great Śakti or power’) Hinduism considers God not only as the Father, but also as the Mother, of this universe. If God is Parabrahman, he is also Parāśakti. These two aspects are inseparable even as fire and its burning power are. According to the Saivāgamas, Śiva as the highest Principle differentiates himself—at the time of evolution of this universe—into Parāśakti (the transcenden¬tal, supreme Power), all the while remain¬ing himself unaffected. From Parāśakti (Supreme Power) evolves Cicchakti (Power of Conscious¬ness); from Cichhakti comes Anandaśakti (Power of Bliss); from Ānandaśakti emanates Icchāśakti (Will-power); from Icchāśakti issues Jñānaśakti (Power of Knowledge); and, from this Jñānaśakti emerges Kriyāśakti (Power of Action). Sometimes, the five aspects of Siva like Sadyojāta, Vāmadeva and so on are said to have been derived from the five aspects of Śakti. The word Parāśakti is more fre¬quently used to indicate Pārvatī herself.